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proper etiquette for this situation?
Old 10-21-2015, 06:00 AM   #1
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proper etiquette for this situation?

Husband and I are visiting out of state family. Found out a week prior to our departure there is going to be a wedding while we are visiting and that we will be attending along with his mother and multiple other family members. The bride is the daughter of my husbands second cousin. I probably met this second cousin years ago but now could not pick her out of a crowd of 3 people. My husband rarely is in contact with her either. Husband and I dont even know/have never met her daughter or the groom. We did not receive an invitation in the mail....We will attend, but I feel a little strange doing so. And, now, I'm wondering about a wedding gift......
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Old 10-21-2015, 06:05 AM   #2
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Gifts aren't mandatory, but why wouldn't you?
Quote:
If I'm attending a destination wedding, is my presence enough of a present?

No, it is not, our experts say.

Most couples understand that the expense of travel might cut into the gift, but according to Post, "it is still customary to send a gift if you are attending.”

Purdy agrees. “It’s customary to give a token gift even if it’s just a token, but it should reflect your relationship with the couple.”
The Refined Rules of Wedding Gift Etiquette | Fox News Magazine
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Old 10-21-2015, 06:38 AM   #3
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It's rather difficult to decide on what gift to give someone you really don't know but you can give cash/check with the wedding greeting card. You decide the amount $20-$100+.
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Old 10-21-2015, 06:49 AM   #4
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At very least, your gift should cover the cost of the meal for two people, recognizing that the couple is also paying for the hall, the band/DJ, flowers, etc., I would say at least $100, and probably a lot more, but it will depend if they are doing the full wedding hall thing, or something more homespun.

If they are going the homespun route, they have probably had to do a ton of the work themselves to make it nice, so you wouldn't want to be cheap.

It is kind of odd to attend a wedding to which you were not invited. I assume arrangements were made through family members.
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Old 10-21-2015, 07:07 AM   #5
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I'd leave a week early.
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Old 10-21-2015, 07:12 AM   #6
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You were not actually invited by the bride and groom? I would inquire with the family members I was visiting to find out if they cajoled a last minute invitation so they could include you. If so, I would tell them to call back and cancel the invitation and spend that afternoon with a book. Unless, that is, there would be a fair number of friends/family members you would like to catch up with. In that case, buy a gift and go.
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Old 10-21-2015, 07:18 AM   #7
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Going to the wedding, or to the wedding and reception?
Big difference.
I've seen plenty of weddings where a big crowd was present, but the reception was just for a much smaller group of specifically invited guests. Going to the reception would obviously imply the need for a gift, but if you're just among the wedding ceremony crowd, not so much.
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Old 10-21-2015, 08:54 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by Davis65 View Post
It is kind of odd to attend a wedding to which you were not invited. I assume arrangements were made through family members.
I would not feel comfortable with this arrangement at ALL, and honestly? I would not go. Crashing a wedding is not my idea of fun, even if the wedding is for some distant family member. And without a written, formal invitation, that is exactly what you are doing.

I don't think Emily Post covers proper etiquette for crashing a wedding.
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Old 10-21-2015, 08:57 AM   #9
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I'd ask to find out how large the group is.

Big event with 1000 people: fine to attend. Small event, invent a plausible excuse not to attend and send a nice card. Same thing with deciding to attend only the ceremony, the party reception, dinner etc ..

And some people / cultures think the more the merrier, while having a few strangers attend can be experienced as a fantastic treat by the happy couple, making the marriage "extra blessed".

Guess what I'm saying: just ask a bit more about the expectations and circumstances.

For me specifically for example having distant family attend my hypothetical wedding would be great. For others in my family, not so much.
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Old 10-21-2015, 09:00 AM   #10
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I would never go to a wedding if I wasnt invited by the bride or groom....and they probably dont want people they dont really know being invited by other guests. Does the bride and groom even know you are coming?
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Old 10-21-2015, 09:10 AM   #11
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If I had not received an invitation in the mail and had not been invited by the couple, I would not be attending.

You probably received this informal invitation (from whom?) because of a sense of obligation because you will be in the area. Perhaps a spontaneous informal invitation reflects the culture of this family....or not. In my family, inviting people I didn't know to a wedding simply would not happen. In fact, I recall a cousin's wedding years ago where friends of a cousin of the bride who were visiting from another country joined in the evening party. They were treated courteously but their dress was too informal (too much skin showing) and their presence made quite a few people uncomfortable.
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Old 10-21-2015, 09:22 AM   #12
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Maybe all the invitations were informal and it's a family and friends party/reunion vibe? If your mother wrangled the invitation on your behalf since you will be visiting then, it won't reflect poorly on you to attend (just on her, if that) and it might make you seem standoffish if now you don't attend (I am looking at this through the lens of some of DH's extended family who love to talk about things like this, for years and years). I would probably attend graciously, and at the wedding thank everyone involved most copiously for the invitation, and give a decent enough gift (ask what your mother is giving them). You'll probably never see them again so it probably doesn't really matter but that's what I would do.
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Old 10-21-2015, 03:01 PM   #13
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Unless I'd been invited by by the bride & groom I would not attend. Since they did not extend the invitation, who did?
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Old 10-21-2015, 03:47 PM   #14
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Unless I'd been invited by by the bride & groom I would not attend. Since they did not extend the invitation, who did?
What Walt said.
For some reason people think it's okay to include other people in their invitation. I had an anniversary party for my parents and the invitation said "no children". A relative brought their small children. We had a wonderful sit-down dinner at a very nice restaurant with two children that screamed, ran around and threw food. The husband and wife were sure we didn't mean their children. Wasn't he cute with potatoes on his head......just precious!
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Old 10-21-2015, 04:12 PM   #15
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I think I'd pass unless I received an invitation.
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